“A budget deficit generally means bad news, but the Minnesota Orchestra’s report Tuesday that it finished the fiscal year $650,000 in the red was greeted with relief,” writes Graydon Royce in Tuesday’s (12/2) Star Tribune (Minneapolis). “ ‘A remarkable year of rebuilding’ was how board chairman Gordon Sprenger described the fiscal 2014 results.” Following a sixteen-month labor dispute, “The orchestra opened its performance year in February…. Since then, Osmo Vänskä was rehired as music director, Kevin Smith was hired as CEO and president, extraordinary donations were made primarily to endowment funds and community groups helped raise more than $300,000 in collaboration with board, administration and musician representatives…. Revenue in the year ending Aug. 31 reached $20.8 million and expenses totaled just under $21.5 million. Smith said the budget for the current fiscal year is about $29 million.… The health of the orchestra’s investment funds … has rebounded…. Investments totaled just under $164 million, compared with about $147 million in 2013.… ‘The last fiscal year was an extraordinary one and I can’t give enough credit to everyone involved,’ Smith said. ‘It took a tremendous amount of leadership just to get a labor agreement. Everyone showed a willingness to compromise and then they clearly rallied.’ ”
Posted December 3, 3014

Pictured: Osmo Vänskä conducted the Minnesota Orchestra this fall as it opened the season with a fundraising gala. Photo by Bre McGee for the Star Tribune